w10 in vm

I want to put Arch on my thinkpad. I have updated it to Windows 10, but I want to put this installation in a virtual machine, with a fresh install. Problem is licensing. It is going on the same PC, but inside a VM instead of as host.

Microsoft will identify the VM as different hardware than the bare metal install, so your OS won't activate automatically when you install Win10 in the VM straight away

Create the VM and install Win7 or Win8.1 (whichever one you used when you upgraded to Win10).
Activate it
Once it's activated, upgrade it to Win10.

That should do the trick

I'm sure this PC uses an OEM license, is this a problem?


With an OEM Win7/8.1 it won't like to activate inside the VM because that's a different hardware ID. However activating it via the automated phone system should work.
Afterwards you can upgrade to Win10 just fine and that should activate by itself.

Of course that workaround is against Microsoft's EULA because the OEM key is only valid for the bare metal install and a VM is considered another machine altogether, so you need to decide for yourself if you're willing to ignore said EULA.

I was told that w10 had a tool that made an ISO so one could install it in a VM, and the EULA was changed so one could do this. But i don't know if i can believe this person.

How do I reinstall W8.1 then? :^)

re-installing 8.1 shouldn't be too hard. Most machines that come with 8.1 have the key inside the BIOS. Normally it should install with the correct key by itself, but you may need to use a tool to read the key from the BIOS so you can enter it manually.
There are plenty of tools for reading the key. (Not too familiar with those myself, the last laptop I bought still came with Win7). Other people will be much more qualified to link to the good ones.

As for the .iso file, you can download that from Microsoft themselves.


Do i need to read the key before reinstalling? This is a Thinkpad T440, a year old.
Is that link for grabbing the OS from the drive? To clarify I'm running w10 as I upgraded already.
I want to see an official torrent to download 8.1, as my connection is too unreliable to let me download the ISO through Chrome.

you could go and grab an edge development virtual image. the images last for 90 days but you can take a snapshot of them in virtualbox and reset it back to the beginning of the time period.

grab an image here. https://dev.modern.ie/tools/vms

The thing is that I want to be able to sell this PC when I'm done with studies in 1.5yrs. I don't want a ghetto solution. I could just use the official ISO and buypass KMS so I could have the 180-day trial last forever. But that is considered pirating, and to have a pirated OS is never a good selling point IMO.

This turned out to be harder than I thought lol :D